Santa's Wish is a song (as sung by Santa) for children. It is also the title of a book and CD, with Santa narrating the story.
HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?
When I visit with children in the mall during the Christmas season, I usually spend at least six weeks on location, and, that’s a full seven days a week! The hours are long, and time goes by slowly, especially the first two weeks when there are fewer visitors. Then, after Thanksgiving I’m getting more and more visitors every day. Finally the last two weeks are in front of me and the line of excited children waiting to see Santa is at least an hour long! Every day closer to Christmas the lines get longer and the excitement of the big day coming is felt by children and adults alike. It’s a wonderful time and I’m thrilled to be able to visit with children and give them a memory that will last a lifetime. It’s a very rewarding (and sometimes emotionally overwhelming) job. And I love it!
Last year, during the slower time of the first weeks, an idea came to me for a Christmas song. Not just any Christmas song, but one actually sung by Santa himself! As hard as I tried, I could not remember when there has ever been such a concept for a song.
Having sat in “the big chair” for so many years, I felt I truly had an understanding of the relationship between Santa and children. I’ve seen and heard it all! I wanted to be able to bring all of the magical elements of a child's visit with Santa into a song. What would they like for Christmas? What are they telling Santa? Seeing the joy and love on the faces of children and the special relationship they have with Santa Claus is impossible to express with just words. With a song I was able to capture the emotion!
As a songwriter, I felt I could best convey the spirit of Christmas in a way that children could relate, but also, and almost more importantly, adults could identify with and fondly remember the Christmas’ of their youth. On top of that, I wanted to have the underlying feeling of what it’s like for Santa to share this experience. I believe I’ve accomplished my goal!
Once I started coming up with ideas I couldn’t stop the flow! It was like a gift from Santa himself. I actually began channeling Santa!
I would sit in my big Santa chair and in my mind be working on lyrics and melody; going over and over them in my head so I would not forget! The hardest part was when I had a visitor. The songwriting process stopped cold. On my breaks I would bring out my iPod and sing into its voice recorder so I would not forget what I had come up with while on the set. I was so happy to have a quiet break room!
The whole process took six days. In songwriting time, that’s not bad. Especially since I was not sitting in front of a piano or holding a guitar to assist me in the process. I always bring a guitar with me when I’m away from home “on assignment”. After I had the song worked out, I spent a couple of nights at the hotel working on finding just the right chords to fit the melody. On December 5, 2011, before going to the mall in the morning, I turned on the iPod and recorded my “demo” in the hotel room.
WHAT ABOUT THE BOOK?
One night, while trying to go to sleep, the idea hit me that the best way to market this song would be to have it as the focal point of a children’s story. Well, there went the possibility of falling asleep any time soon! As I lay there, my mind racing at an unbelievable speed, the story developed. Before finally falling asleep from sheer exhaustion, I had the story finished!
The story follows siblings Sarah and Cody as they prepare for their visit with Santa. It’s a very special day! On the way to the mall, their mother reminisces of when she was a child and had a very unusual visit with Santa. He sang her a song! But it was one she had never heard before! Perhaps Santa will sing the song to Sarah and Cody! Wouldn’t that be special?
So now I have a song and a story!
I NEED AN ILLUSTRATOR!
During my eight years working at Northpark Mall in Mississippi, I became friends with Marshall Ramsey. Marshall is the editorial cartoonist for The Clarion-Ledger newspaper in Jackson. He is a two-time Pulitzer finalist and is nationally syndicated by Copley News Service. His cartoons have appeared in USA Today, Newsweek, U.S. News and World Report, The Chicago Tribune, The New York Times and on his mother's refrigerator. It is also rumored that his work has appeared frequently in the bathrooms of several prominent local politicians. Marshall has also illustrated several books, including seven children's books for his cousin, financial expert Dave Ramsey, and one for chef and author Robert St. John. Marshall also has a weekday radio show on Super Talk Mississippi from 3pm to 6pm. http://marshallramsey.com/about/
I met Marshall quite by accident. While doing a promotional visit to the Clarion-Ledger, Marshall walked in. I told him what a big fan of his work I am and found out he’s a fan of mine as well because he had been taking his children to visit me at the mall every year. We became instant friends!
I knew Marshall was the right man for the job!
In taking on this project, I felt that Kickstarter would be the right platform to help me raise the necessary funds. Kickstarter ONLY helps fund CREATIVE projects. If you wish to help fund this project, you first choose the level at which you'd like to help based upon the rewards offered. Your credit card information is taken BUT, you card is not charged unless I reach my goal. With Kickstarter it's an all or nothing situation!
I plan on starting off with 1,000 copies of “Santa’s Wish”, the book with accompanying CD. The story will be narrated by "Santa” and will contain the studio recording (with orchestration) of the song, “Santa’s Wish”.
This Kickstarter campaign will help me raise funds for:
- CD manufacture
- Book printing
If I raise more than the goal, that money will go towards more books with CDs and promotion. Ultimately, I will be seeking placement of the song in film or TV.
Please spend some time to review the “rewards” available when you contribute to this campaign. Remember, even if there is not a child in your life to enjoy this book and song, there is a child somewhere that would truly enjoy it. And, should you wish to simply support the project without receiving a reward, that's ok too! It's your choice.
A FEW WORDS ABOUT THE VIDEO
I have watched many Kickstarter videos in research for this project. The videos that always got my attention were clever and engaging. They drew me into watching all the way to the end. I wanted to present this project in an entertaining and informative way. I hope you enjoy it! The video was produced by my good friends Jim and Josh Adam of Kicking Dead Horse Productions.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
pledged of $7,500 goal
seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful This project reached the deadline without achieving its funding goal on September 30, 2012.
Aug 31, 2012 - Sep 30, 2012 (30 days)
Pledge $1 or more
A personal thank you email from George and Santa. Every dollar raised puts us closer to our goal.Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $15 or more
A digital download of the song "Santa's Wish" and a personal thank you email from George and Santa.Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $25 or more
Santa's Wish, the book and CD; sheet music of the song and a personalized autographed picture of Santa. (international backers please add $5 for shipping)Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $50 or more
Santa's Wish, the book and CD; sheet music of the song; personalized autographed picture of Santa and a picture of Santa and illustrator Marshall Ramsey together. (international backers please add $5 for shipping)Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $100 or more
2 copies of Santa's Wish, the book and CD; 2 copies of sheet music of the song; 2 personalized autographed pictures of Santa and 2 pictures of Santa and illustrator Marshal Ramsey together and autographed by both. (international backers please add $5 for shipping)Estimated delivery: Nov 2015
Pledge $250 or more
1 backer Limited (19 of 20 left)
4 copies of Santa's Wish, the book and CD; 4 copies of the sheet music; 4 personalized autographed pictures of Santa; 4 pictures of Santa and Marshall Ramsey together and autographed by both. PLUS, a set of 4 AUTOGRAPHED AND NUMBERED illustrations from the book by illustrator Marshall Ramsey. (international backers please add $5 for shipping)Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $500 or more
1 backer Limited (19 of 20 left)
Fifteen minute Skype viisit with Santa (must be in November or December, 2012, Sunday's only, 9am to 10am or 7pm to 9pm; CENTRAL TIME) PLUS: 10 copies of Santa's Wish, the book and CD; 10 copies of sheet music of the song; 10 personalized autographed pictures of Santa; 10 autographed pictures of Santa and illustrator Marshall Ramsey together. PLUS, a set of 4 AUTOGRAPHED AND NUMBERED illustrations from the book by illustrator Marshall Ramsey. (This reward available to USA residents only)Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $5,000 or more
0 backers Limited (1 of 1 left)
CHRISTMAS EVE SKYPE VISIT WITH SANTA (up to 1/2 hour--Santa's VERY busy that night!); a PERSONAL VISIT from SANTA! (Up to two hours long. Mutually agreed upon date and limited to the continental USA. Valid between January 1st and November 1st 2013.) This could be for a birthday party, summertime Bar B Que, wedding, fundraiser or special event! Use your imagination! Lets have fun! PLUS: 10 copies of Santa's Wish, the book and CD; 10 copies of the sheet music of the song; 10 personalized autographed pictures of Santa; 10 autographed pictures of Santa and illustrator Marshall Ramsey together, PLUS, 4 AUTOGRAPHED AND NUMBERED illustrations from the book by illustrator Marshall Ramsey. (Set illustrations # 1) And finally, a "Thank You" recognition in the book! The books, photo's and illustrations may be received in December 2012 or hand delivered at the PERSONAL VISIT in 2013. (This reward available to USA residents only)Estimated delivery: Dec 2012